Sunday, February 2, 2014

Until I Say Goodbye

Today I was visited by an 89 year old angel whose name is Claire May.  She must be five feet tall, she was wrapped in a fake fur coat and she came to see me at work.

The fist time I met her, maybe three weeks ago, she was in my store looking for a skirt.  She was using a magnifying glass to read the price tags and it had fallen on the ground and broke.  I picked it up and tried to put it together for her. We got to talking that afternoon about many things.  Her son, her eyesight, she'd been married for 60 years. As we were talking, another customer walked up and hugged me. We'd been talking earlier about Luther's ALS.

Claire May overheard this customer say she'd keep me in her prayers and asked why someone was praying for me.  I told her.  We didn't talk much longer.  She took my hand, said thank you for helping and she wished me well.

Fast forward to today.  Claire May came in, she approached me and said she had something personal to ask.  She wondered if she could pray for me and for Luther.  She said she'd been praying privately but she wanted to include us in her churches prayer chain.  She goes to church twice on Sundays and she was heading back.  She thought it was right to ask for my permission before she "went public."

How wonderful is that?  We open our heart, we share our story, we hold someone's hand and offer someone help - it's a new way for me to think, to act.  I think for many of us!  We're busy, we're consumed with day to day things, we don't talk to strangers, we keep to ourselves.

Claire and I chatted for a few more minutes.  I cried just a little and she held my hand again.  I walked her up to the front of the store and thanked her for thinking of us and then I cried a lot.  Fortunately, it wasn't too busy and I could take a minute to regroup.

Claire mentioned her grand-nephew wrote the book "Until I Say Goodbye:  My Year of Living with Joy" which is a woman's story of ALS.  I'll link the article about the book here:

I googled the book and found that the author - Brett Witter - is associated with the new movie coming out "Monuments Men" with George Clooney and Matt Damon.  Pretty cool!

In any event, the book "Until I Say Goodbye" is about a journalist who finds out she has ALS and decides to make the next year about creating as much joy in her life as possible.  She was diagnosed in 2011 and now is in a wheelchair.  She still writes using an attachment on her nose; her computer reads the dot she (or rather, her nose) points at a word.

This is her most recent article, celebrating resolutions and musing about dying.  Interesting things to think about.

Click here for the article:

This is her website:

No comments:

Post a Comment